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Squalane vs. Hyaluronic Acid: Which is Better?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you should have heard of the product squalane buzzing through the beauty industry recently. The newly praised emollient has made waves in the skincare scene, with some comparing it to and even holding it higher than the cult-favorite, hyaluronic acid. 

Both ingredients are known for their hydrating and moisturizing effects but work in different ways to achieve these results. The products can be easily found on the market in serums, oils, and lotions claiming to solve all your dry skin-related woes – but can either live up to their ultra-hydrating claims? 

Whether you’re a beauty buff that wants to know more or if you’re a complete novice when it comes to cosmetics, we’re here to give you the low down on the two battling skincare products! It’s time to dive straight into the battle of squalane vs hyaluronic acid and see which comes out on top…

What Are the Differences?

woman applying facial oil on face

To first understand the differences between squalane and hyaluronic acid, you need to know what they are and what exactly each product does to your skin. Let’s start with the newest of the two, squalane. 

Squalane has made a huge name for itself relatively quickly within the beauty community due to its versatility and benefits to all skin types – it’s hard to come across a product that works wonders for any skin type, so it’s no surprise that it’s gotten so much praise! Squalane is an altered form of the natural compound, squalene, that’s found in our body’s sebum. 

If you’ve had trouble with oil or clogged pores, then you’ll know what issues can arise if your body overproduces sebum. To keep the benefits that squalene provides to the skin minus the potential of clogged pores, it was put through a process called hydrogenation, creating squalane. 

Squalane is much more stable than its natural predecessor and acts as a barrier to the skin. The ingredient is full of antioxidants which help to fight against free radicals while providing a light but nourishing hydration to your skin. 

It works for all skin types as its natural properties can both fool the skin into recalculating its production of sebum and be easily absorbed into the skin. Squalane is also an emollient, which is used for soothing inflammation and reducing irritation while hydrating the skin, making it perfect for sensitive skin, too!

Hyaluronic acid, however, is a humectant – these are made specifically to preserve and replenish moisture. You can find hyaluronic acid naturally within the body, in the eyes, joints, and skin. This is one of the products that keep your skin plump and healthy while you grow. 

Unfortunately, our bodies can’t produce the same amount of hyaluronic acid as we get older, and so we start to see the effects of aging within our skin. You can begin using hyaluronic acid at any age, both for delaying the aging process in the skin and reducing its appearance when the aging process has already begun. 

One difference between the two products is that the effects of hyaluronic acid are more obvious for those who already have some form of moisture in the skin, even if that is just a small amount. This is because the molecule can only retain and replenish, and to do that you need to have some form of water or moisture already within your skin. 

However, hyaluronic acid is usually made in water or gel-like textures which seem to absorb into the skin better than oil-based products such as squalane. Hyaluronic acid also has a few other benefits too along with its hydrating effects, such as plumping and reducing the appearance of wrinkles and evening out any unwanted skin texture.

Which is Better?

woman touching face

In the battle of squalane vs hyaluronic acid, there really isn’t a clear winner as both products deserve their place on your vanity for different reasons. If you’re looking for a hydrating product that is certain to work with your skin type, squalane might be a safer choice – but that doesn’t mean it’s better. 

If you want to focus on anti-aging properties while you hydrate your thirsty skin, hyaluronic acid beats squalane to the finish line. While both skincare products overlap in many ways, they are also very different and have extra benefits for the skin that you should consider. But, who said you have to pick between the two in the first place?

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How to Use Squalane and Hyaluronic Acid Together

Although this started as a battle between two hydrating skincare products, there’s nothing stopping you from using both products together. You can claim all the benefits from squalane and hyaluronic acid, as long as you use them correctly! That’s right, your skincare products need to go in the correct order to get the most out of your routine.

So, which product should you use first? The answer is simple – always start off with your hyaluronic acid or products containing the ingredient. This is because it’s absorbed much quicker and will boost your skin’s moisture. 

If you’re not sure which hyaluronic acid-based product to try, we suggest the Sublime Uplift Neck and Decollete Firming Serum which is packed full of hydrating hyaluronic acid and blended with natural Shiitake mushroom extract.

Sublime Uplift Neck and Decollete Firming Serum

After the hyaluronic acid has thoroughly absorbed into the skin, you can go ahead and apply your squalane. Applying your squalane after the hyaluronic acid will lock in any hydration from the first product while adding a little extra of its own, too. 

If you’re in a rush, some squalane-rich products can be added to your foundation, so you don’t have to sit around and wait for the product to soak into the skin!

So, you heard it here first – in the battle of squalane vs hyaluronic acid, both come out on top!

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Aqua (Water), Pueraria Mirifica Extract, Propylene Glycol, Propanediol, Polysorbate 20, Panthenol, Butylene Glycol, Acetyl Hexapeptide-38, Hydroxyethycellulose, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Sorbic Acid, Fragrance


Aqua (Water), Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Propanediol, Glycerin, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Panthenol, Macelignan, Lepidium Meyenii Root Extract, Acetyl Tetrapeptide-2, Tocopherol, Caprylyl Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbic Acid, Fragrance